When To Call a Doctor
Call your doctor to schedule an appointment if you have any symptoms, such as:
- A new lump or swollen gland in your neck, under your arm, or in your groin.
- Frequent nosebleeds, bleeding from the gums or rectum, more frequent bruising, or very heavy menstrual bleeding.
- Frequent fevers.
- Night sweats.
- Unexplained appetite loss or recent weight loss.
- Feeling tired a lot without a known reason.
- Swelling and pain on the left side of the belly.
Reference Watchful waiting Opens New Window is a period when your doctor is checking you regularly but not treating you. It may be a treatment choice if you are an older adult, depending on the stage of the leukemia and your overall health.
Doctors may use watchful waiting for patients with Reference chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) Opens New Window at first because treatment may not be needed. For example, it is estimated that 1 out of 3 people who have CLL never need treatment.Reference 3 People who have CLL often live for a long time without treatment.
Watchful waiting isn't usually recommended for other types of leukemia.
During watchful waiting, you will:
- Have regular appointments with your doctor.
- Have regular medical tests, including scans and blood tests.
- Be told which symptoms to report to your doctor immediately.
Who to see
Health professionals who can evaluate symptoms of leukemia include the following:
- Reference Family medicine physician Opens New Window
- Reference Internist Opens New Window
- Reference Pediatrician Opens New Window
- Reference Nurse practitioner Opens New Window
- Reference Physician assistant Opens New Window
The diagnosis of leukemia will be done by a Reference medical oncologist Opens New Window, Reference pediatric oncologist, Opens New Window or Reference hematologist Opens New Window. These specialists also treat leukemia.
To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Reference Making the Most of Your Appointment.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference October 22, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Brian Leber, MDCM, FRCPC - Hematology